The Assembly’s privileges committee today requested pending funds meant for MLAs to carry out schemes within their respective constituencies to be released at the earliest.
The committee held a meeting to discuss privileges of MLAs in regards to various government schemes and on the alleged non-responsive attitude of government officers towards committee members.
The Chief Secretary, Additional Chief Secretaries and several other officials from the Secretariat were summoned by the committee, but Chief Secretary MS Rao was not present as he was out of state.
Speaking to reporters after the meeting, committee member and Mawsynram MLA Himalaya Shangpliang said that committee Chairperson Saleng S Sangma had urged officials to release all MLA funds for 2019-20 before the next Assembly session, failing which “the committee will be compelled to take necessary action as empowered” to do so.
MLAs have various entitlements in the form of schemes and polices framed by the government with certain programmes like the Intensive Sports and Youth Development Programme, Arts and Culture scheme, Special Rural Work Programme Scheme (SRWP) and Chief Minister’s Rural Development Fund.
“The government has not been releasing these funds regularly,” Shangpliang said.
He added that SRWP funds amounting to Rs 25 lakh had been received for the last financial year but the government has yet to release the remaining Rs 2.5 crore.